Bahrain - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Bahrain develops robust telecoms infrastructure for the future

The telecommunications sector in Bahrain is robust and progressive and it contributes about 4% a year to the Kingdom’s GDP. Bahrain is striving to drive further growth in the telecoms sector in 2020 by ensuring it is competitive and adaptable to market dynamics.

The major telecoms operators include Batelco, STC Bahrain and Zain Bahrain. The industry is regulated by Telecommunications Regulator (TRA) which has been working hard to resolve any regulatory or spectrum hurdles in readiness for 5G. This government support, along with proactive operators, resulted in Batelco launching the first commercial 5G network in Bahrain in mid-2019.

Batelco also undertook a significant operational restructure in 2019 and launched Bahrain’s National Broadband Network operated by BNET. Bahrain’s telecommunications industry is guided by its Fourth National Telecommunications Plan which focuses on fibre-optic infrastructure deployment and establishing affordable prices for high-speed access.

Overall, the mobile broadband sector is poised for growth with 4G networks in place and a high mobile subscriber penetration paving the way for adoption.

This BuddeComm report provides statistics and analysis on the key sectors of Bahrain’s telecom market, presenting an overview of the regulatory environment, the fixed network operators and services, telecom infrastructure, mobile operators and mobile infrastructure, supported by statistics. The report includes a range of subscriber forecasts through to 2024.

BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains all around the world. During this time, the telecoms sector may experience a downturn in mobile device and ICT equipment production and a decline in consumer spending on telecoms services. Overall progress towards 5G may also be postponed or slowed down in some countries. Please also note: Industry forecasts contained in this report have not taken Coronavirus into consideration as it is yet largely unknown what the long-term impact will be.

Key developments:

  • There is evidence that fixed-broadband penetration is rising in Bahrain.
  • In mid-2019 the TRA renewed the mobile frequency licences held by Batelco and Zain for another ten-year period.
  • Zain Bahrain’s data revenues have been steadily increasing since at least 2015.
  • The TRA was offering more mobile spectrum for tender in mid-2019.
  • Batelco’s split into two divisions was formally finalised in May 2019.

Companies covered in this report include:

Batelco, STC Bahrain, Zain Bahrain, Kalaam Telecom.

Table of Contents

  • Key statistics

  • Middle East - regional market comparison

    • Introduction
    • Mobile and mobile broadband penetration
    • Fixed and mobile broadband penetration
  • Country overview

  • Telecommunications market

    • Historical overview
    • Market analsis
  • Regulatory environment

    • Regulatory authority
    • Overview
    • Telecom sector liberalisation in Bahrain
      • First National Telecommunications Plan
      • Second National Telecommunications Plan
      • Third National Telecommunications Plan
      • Fourth National Telecommunications Plan
    • Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) licences
    • Interconnect
    • Access
    • Number portability
    • Privatisation
    • Wholesaling
    • Mobile network developments
      • Mobile licenses
    • Subscriber registration
      • Prepaid subscriber registration
      • SIM card verification
    • Roaming tariff reduction
    • Mobile Termination Rates (MTR)
    • OTT providers
    • Spectrum developments
  • Mobile communications

    • Market analysis
    • Mobile statistics
      • General statistics
    • Mobile voice
      • Prepaid
    • Mobile broadband statistics
    • Mobile infrastructure
      • 5G
      • 4G
      • GSM, 3G
    • Major mobile operators
      • Batelco
      • Zain Bahrain
      • STC Bahrain
    • Mobile handsets
  • Fixed-line broadband market

    • Historical overview
    • Market analysis
      • Fixed broadband statistics
  • Fixed network operators

    • Overview
    • Bahrain telecommunications company (Batelco)
    • Alternative operators
      • Kalaam Telecom
  • Telecommunications infrastructure

    • National telecom network
    • International infrastructure
      • Submarine/terrestrial cable networks
      • Satellite networks
      • Noor-sat (acquired by Eutelsat)
  • Smart infrastructure

    • E-banking and e-payments
  • Appendix – Historic data

  • Related reports


List of Tables

  • Table 1 – Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities - Bahrain - 2020
  • Table 2 – Bahrain - GDP and inflation – 2012 – 2020
  • Table 3 – Bahrain – current operators and services - 2019
  • Table 4 – Bahrain - telecom sector revenue – 2006 – 2018
  • Table 5 – Bahrain - telecom sector revenue breakdown – 2013 – 2018
  • Table 6 – Bahrain - mobile sector ARPU – 2013 – 2018
  • Table 7 – Bahrain - mobile number accepted portability requests – 2017 – Q1 2019
  • Table 8 – Bahrain - mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 2009 – 2024
  • Table 9 – Bahrain - total prepaid mobile subscribers - 2009 – Q1 2019
  • Table 10 – Bahrain - retail mobile market revenue – 2012 – 2018
  • Table 11 – Bahrain - mobile ARPS – 2012 – 2018
  • Table 12 – Bahrain - mobile subscribers with active mobile broadband subscriptions – 2010 – 2024
  • Table 13 – Batelco Bahrain – revenue by segment – 2018; 2019
  • Table 14 – Batelco total group mobile subscribers – 2008 – Q1 2018
  • Table 15 – Zain Bahrain – revenue, EBITDA and ARPU - 2008 – 2019
  • Table 16 - Zain Bahrain – market share of mobile data revenues – 2015 – 2019
  • Table 17 – Bahrain - fixed broadband subscribers – 2009 - 2024
  • Table 18 – Batelco revenue for Group and Bahrain – 2009 – 2019
  • Table 19 – Bahrain - fixed lines in service and teledensity – 2010 – 2020
  • Table 20 – Historic – Bahrain - mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 1995 – 2008
  • Table 21 – Historic – Bahrain - fixed lines in service and teledensity - 1995 – 2008
  • Table 22 – Historic - Bahrain - telecom sector revenue – 2006; 2007
  • Table 23 – Historic - Bahrain - total prepaid mobile subscribers - 1999 – 2008
  • Table 24 – Historic - Batelco revenue for Group and Bahrain – 2005 – 2008

List of Charts

  • Chart 1 – Middle East – mobile subscriber and mobile broadband penetration
  • Chart 2 – Middle East – fixed and mobile broadband subscriber penetration
  • Chart 3 – Mobile subscriptions forecast to rise in Bahrain – 2009 – 2024
  • Chart 4 – Bahrain mobile broadband subscriber growth – 2009 – 2024

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